Tuesday, December 22, 2009

The closest exit may be behind you

A great feeling of dread came over me as the grey thick clouds hugged the plane upon our decent into Seattle. Just moments before a voice came on the crackly muffled loud speakers to tell us winds were high and to expect some turbulence. “The Seattle weather today is rainy, 48 degrees” he croaked. Oh, really I sarcastically thought to myself. I missed home already. I missed the Oklahoma sunshine I left countless hours earlier. I missed the farm. Painfully, I missed the farm.

The plane made its way through in spite of the thick grey clouds. Soon my city was visible. Wet and grey at high noon. Black and green dots became visible as great pine trees and houses crammed together so closely it seemed like a row of fallen dominoes. Alki beach, Elliot bay, Lake Washington, bridges over water backed up already in traffic. The area I grew up in looked like Mister Roger’s neighborhood clearly fake but believable if you only use your imagination.

The plane hit the tarmac hard and I bit my tongue, I was home. Home where I grew up, Home where my kin have stayed put since 1925, except for me and my oldest niece Jen who left our Seattle to live and create new Homes far, far away. Others of my tribe made attempts at living away but came back briskly with wounds to be healed. But it was the opposite for Jen and I, her in Arizona me in Oklahoma gave us an opportunity to come into ourselves. To be created without judgment or ridicule. To become. I can’t speak for Jen but It did me a world of good to leave home and I even feel like I’m a better more productive member of my clan then I was before. I have a better appreciation for them. I have more to offer them. More stories, more conversation, more laughs and I’m settled in good with myself now.

I picked up my big bulky bag off of the carousel in baggage claim. I waited a little while before I called to have my brother in law pick me up. I thought about seeing my family and the permanent shadows my sister left behind like the victims of Hiroshima, my sister’s shadow engraved forever in the kitchen after the devastating cancer bomb. At the kitchen table she sat, with her coffee and paper, un-moved un-altered. God how will I deal? Then I thought about the Christmas tree and all the decorations my brother in law continues to put up with such spirit. I thought of rest, I thought of seeing my great niece and nephew. I thought of eating and where I would go first. I thought of all the good wine I would be drinking and the crab and salmon I would eat. I thought of what fun it will be to cook dinner on Christmas Eve side by side with my sister’s shadow. And finally, I called. “I’m home” I said, “come and get me”.

Today I’ll go to the Pike Place Market, I’ll go to the coffee shop, visit the butcher, go to the spice shop, the wine shop and of course the coffee shop again for the train ride back home. (The new light rail is in operation now!) Glad to be home.

No comments: